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Op-ed: China, Nepal draw new blueprint for bilateral ties in new era

By Ren Huanyu (People's Daily)    09:30, October 15, 2019

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Nepali counterpart Bidya Devi Bhandari jointly announced to establish a strategic partnership of cooperation between the two nations featuring everlasting friendship for development and prosperity in the spirit of solidarity and win-win cooperation.

The announcement was made when Xi made a two-day state visit to Nepal from Oct. 12 at the invitation of Bhandari.

This visit marked Xi’s first state visit to the country and also the first visit to Nepal paid by a Chinese head of state in 23 years. The historic visit has drawn a blueprint for the bilateral relationship between the two countries in the new era at strategic level and from long-term perspective, taking China-Nepal ties to a new height.

China and Nepal are good friends sharing mutual respect and trust, good partners for mutually beneficial cooperation, good neighbors benefiting from people-to-people exchanges and good brothers who always stand alongside each other, wrote President Xi in a signed article published on Nepali newspapers ahead of his trip to the country.

The solid foundation of the China-Nepal friendship and the sincere expectation of Xi's visit from all walks of life in Nepal could be seen everywhere during the visit, whether in the welcome ceremony with national characteristics, the grand welcome banquet or in the red welcome arches specially built for his visit and the welcoming crowds formed by tens of thousands of Nepalis.

Xi’s visit is of historic significance, said the Nepali President, adding that the joy of the Nepali people is beyond expression of words.

Xi expects that China and Nepal will foster closer political relations, build more accessible connectivity network, further consolidate public opinion foundations and carry out richer multilateral cooperation.

Back in April, Bhandari paid a state visit to China, during which she attended the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and the opening ceremony of the 2019 Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition.

Xi’s visit this time to Nepal marked the completion of mutual visits between the two heads of state within this year and further enhanced their friendship.

The two countries’ decision to lift bilateral ties follows the principle of equality, harmonious coexistence, ever-lasting friendship and comprehensive cooperation. It further deepens strategic communication and political mutual trust between the two countries and will bring new development opportunities for them.

To broaden practical cooperation with Nepal, China’s important development partner in South Asia, is an important goal of Xi’s visit.

He proposed that both sides should carry out all-round cooperation and encourage exchanges in various areas to develop a Multi-dimensional Connectivity Network across the Himalayas.

Meanwhile, he stressed the importance of the synergy of development strategies, enhancement of connectivity, promotion of trade and investment, stronger people-to-people bond, cooperation in law enforcement and multilateral coordination regarding bilateral relations.

Xi also called on both sides to strengthen cooperation in governance, promote the synergy between the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and Nepal’s national strategy of building a land-linked country, carry out capacity and investment cooperation, speed up the construction of China-Nepal cross-border economic cooperation zone and enhance education, tourism and sub-national exchanges.

Xi’s proposals presented a promising future of bilateral cooperation and won positive responses from the Nepali side.

Nepal appreciates China's diplomacy of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness with neighboring countries and is willing to actively participate in building the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road to realize its vision of “Prosperous Nepal, Happy Nepali”.

No matter how external circumstances change, Nepal's friendly policy toward China as well as the development of their friendly relations will remain unchanged, said Nepali Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli, revealing Nepal's strong confidence in the China-Nepal relations.

China appreciates Nepal for its firm adherence to the one-China policy and its staunch support for China on issues concerning China’s core interests.

Both countries share similar positions on global and regional issues. They have maintained close cooperation on issues like climate change and sustainable development, firmly supported multilateralism and economic globalization and are willing to jointly protect and promote the interests of developing countries.

Besides, they both support and boost dialogues and exchanges between different civilizations and advocate settling disputes through dialogues and negotiations with an aim of strengthening connectivity and regional cooperation as well as achieving win-win results.

While consolidating the China-Nepal relations, Xi’s visit to Nepal also injects new impetus to the relations between China and South Asia.

The friendship between Nepal and China is unbreakable, and it is as deep as the sea and as high as the Mount Everest, said Bhandari. Her sincere words indicate the strong foundation and bright prospects of the friendly cooperation between the two countries.

Xi’s visit mapped out a new blueprint for China-Nepal relations. As long as they follow the blueprint, the two countries will surely create a new future for bilateral ties and realize the long-term goal of building a community with a shared future for China and Nepal.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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